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I'm sick of people using annoying crapware for "free mp3 conversion" and the like.

Does anyone know of any good quality software that is perhaps open source or free? Sort of like how video lan player is a good solution for playing different types of media file.

Just need something that can convert really well.

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    What type of "media"? What are you trying to convert to? There are various projects for different codecs. Does it have to be user friendly™, CLI, GUI, etc?
    – Chris S
    Commented Jan 1, 2011 at 19:50

4 Answers 4

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ffmpeg is ridiculously powerful -- there are lots of GUIs out there for it, but you didn't mention your OS...

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MediaCoder for Windows

MediaCoder is a free universal media transcoder since 2005. It integrates most popular audio/video codecs and tools in an elegant and transparent manner into an all-in-one transcoding solution. With a flexible and extendable architecture, latest codecs and tools are updated added in constantly. MediaCoder intends to be the swiss army knife for media transcoding in all time.

Features In Brief

  • Converting between most popular audio and video formats
  • Multi-threaded transcoding and job-level parallelization
  • Transcoding with high performance and high quality
  • Flexible control over transcoding parameters
  • Fully standalone, no dependancy on system codecs/splitters
  • Hardware encoding acceleration (nVidia CUDA & Intel Media SDK)


Typical Applications

  • Improving compression / reducing size for audio/video files
  • Converting media content for playback on multimedia devices
  • Converting media content for online publication or broadcasting
  • Extracting audio track from video files
  • Ripping audio/video discs
  • Fixing corrupted or partial downloaded video files


Supported Fomats

Switch Audio for Mac

Switch is one of the most stable and comprehensive multi format audio file converters available and is very easy to use.

  • Universal audio converter supporting all popular formats
  • Convert or compress sound files within minutes of downloading
  • Includes batch audio converter to convert thousands of files
  • Extract audio from any media file including video

Switch Audio Converter Features

  • Batch converting to convert many audio files at once
  • Import and convert a playlist (m3u and pls)
  • Import video files and extract audio (avi, mov, mpeg)
  • Extract and convert audio from DVDs
  • Customizable right-click "Quick Convert" options
  • Convert from multiple file formats at one time
  • Access online database to add song information
  • Listen to tracks prior to conversion
  • Automatically normalize audio while converting
  • MP3 encoder supports constant or variable bit rates when converting to mp3
  • WAV encoder and flac converter supports a range of sample rates
  • Use as a command line plugin for automation with software to convert or compress audio files

System Requirements

  • Windows XP/2003/Vista/2008 and Windows 7
  • For earlier versions please see Windows 98/ME and Windows 2000 respectively for legacy software.
  • Mac OS X 10.3 or above

Codecs and Plugins

  • Information on Compression Codecs
  • Information on Sound Formats
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  • CONS about MediaCoder: 1) There is a limit on how many files for batch converting. 2) non-English filenames are not handled properly
    – deddebme
    Commented Apr 11, 2016 at 16:26
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SoundConverter can convert from any format that GStreamer has codecs for.

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fre:ac is multiplatform and open source, can convert audio and extract audio from video, and I highly recommend it.

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